Matching up for games in The Neighborhood stays the same--it could be a slog, awaiting players to queue up along with the game to NBA 2K MT cycle through all the pre- and post-game animations. I find the The Rec's 5-on-5 games much more satisfying with appropriate matchmaking (given that teams are balanced in skill and positions), and you are able to take this basketball ethos a step further in the organized Pro-Am league. But pleasure from such competitive outlets depends on the players that you get matched with, and also how much your player has progressed as a way to keep up. It's no surprise the microtransactions litter every corner of NBA 2K21--and for me, I have moved on from being outraged to feeling despondent. The game borders on a pay-to-win version, with progression tracks that are paced in methods to nudge you towards paying for VC rather than making it. Improving your stats nevertheless relies on spending VC, along with the prices increase exponentially the farther you upgrade a certain skill. There are plenty of nice cosmetics to make, and it is true a ton of fun dressing up your player in fresh kicks as well as the flyest Nike and Adidas apparel, however their exorbitant VC prices suck the life from the adventure. VC permeates the MyTeam way again, too. This mode functions as a fantasy-esque build-your-own-team endeavor where you earn card packs to unlock players among a roster which spans multiple NBA eras. MyTeam can be captivating for long-time basketball fans such as myself who've Allen Iverson teamed up with Anthony Davis and can take this dream team roster into single-player or multiplayer games. However, the loot-box character of earning card packs--that can be acquired by gradually earning MT points via fresh avenues like challenges, seasonal events, and turning in cards that are useless, or by buying them together with VC--leaves the reliance on VC unsurprisingly egregious. MyGM, which places you into the shoes of a group's General Manager, is a mode worth mentioning. You call the shots for everything out of roster moves, transactions, ticket prices, marketing, and personnel decisions in hopes of building a successful franchise. It is a sports management simulation fantasy, but changes here are only skin deep. You will go through awkwardly written and animated dialogue situations to handle relationships within your business --such as the way I chatted to RJ Barrett about the way he had to play clarinet in order to improve his sanity stats, or became the yes-man of head coach Tom Thibodeau to keep him happy. MyGM's menus are also flooded in a way which makes it difficult to browse and get a grip of how to spend your limited time and resources through the season. I've really enjoyed this mode in Cheap MT 2K21 the past with its RPG-like sensibilities, but it's one that needs a serious revamp.